Southern Family Dental Care provides expert periodontal care and gum disease management. Periodontal maintenance is fundamental in the fight against gum disease if you want to keep gums healthy. Plus, if you are about to have any restorative treatments, including bridges and dental implants, any periodontal infection must be controlled before the procedure to ensure the long-term stability of the treatment.
Am I In Need of Periodontal Maintenance?
The vast majority of us will benefit from some type of periodontal maintenance. Even if we are fastidious about our oral hygiene regime, diligently brushing and flossing twice daily, more intensive cleaning by a dentist (or hygienist) is required, particularly if you have a history of gum disease.
Going to the dentist for regular check-ups and professional teeth cleaning should be part of a preventive care regime, which aims to prevent the disease from spreading with early detection and treatment interventions. The symptoms of gum disease may not be immediately noticeable to the untrained eye, but as gum disease progresses the gums become inflamed, shrink back, and form pockets around the teeth. The pockets increase in size, and the disease begins to attack the bone, as well as the gums - eventually leading to tooth loss.
What Are the Signs of Gum Disease?
The first stage of gum disease is gingivitis. It is caused by plaque, which is the by-product of acid-producing bacteria that feed off the sugary, starchy deposits we eat and drink. If the bacteria are not removed by cleaning, it spreads to the gums, causing irritation and inflammation. If you notice that your gums bleed easily this could be a sign of gingivitis.
Gingivitis is easily treated and is completely curable. However, if left untreated, the disease progresses to periodontitis - a much more serious condition, which ultimately affects bone health.
Periodontitis symptoms may include bleeding gums, tenderness, pain, bad breath, and loose teeth. If gum disease has progressed to periodontitis, it cannot be cured. However, it can be managed, and it can be prevented from getting worse. If untreated, bone, and tooth loss are the ultimate destination of periodontitis.
Other factors, as well as poor oral hygiene, may contribute to periodontitis, including diabetes, medications, smoking, diet, teeth-grinding, stress, and genetics.
What Are the Treatments Included in Periodontal Maintenance?
Treatments included in periodontal maintenance include scaling and root planing. Similar to regular teeth cleaning, but targeting the surface of the tooth and underneath the gumline, the procedures remove deposits of tartar (calculus) that tend to accumulate on the back of the teeth, as well as smoothing the tooth root to make it more difficult for acid-producing bacteria to adhere. Smooth, clean teeth are the enemy of bacteria and if you can stop it in its tracks this will help your oral health no end.
Even if you have advanced periodontitis it is never too late to improve your dental health and smile with a range of other restorative treatments, which include laser treatments, gum grafts, and dental implants.
At Southern Family Dental Care we have a highly-skilled team of specialists who work together to provide the best solutions. If you are worried about gum health, schedule an appointment with us for periodontal maintenance and give us a call by calling 470-410-9774.